CHEYENNE (AP) — Large range fires on state and private land taxed Wyoming firefighters and budgets this past summer.

Deputy State Forester Dan Perko says a wet spring and a lot of cheatgrass that tends to cure early provided a lot of fuel for grass and mixed timber fires mostly in the eastern half of the state.

Dry lightning storms ignited most of the fires although some were caused by passing trains and people.

At times, Wyoming had to seek help from Colorado, South Dakota and other states to handle the multiple fires.

Perko says the state probably spent more money than average this year fighting fires.

He also notes that while fall weather has arrived, fire danger still persists in many areas because ranges can quickly dry out.